Dauntsey Vale Link Scheme and The Good Neighbour Scheme
The Dauntsey Vale Link Scheme (DVLS) provides a good neighbour service for people living in Brinkworth, Christian Malford, Dauntsey and Foxham. Many of our villagers of all ages use this vital service to increase their independence and improve their quality of life. Volunteers may transport clients to and from many places for medical appointments, shopping and local day to day engagements. They can also help with letter writing and paperwork, dog walking during a temporary crisis and a variety of other small tasks that a client may need support with.
As a volunteer with the Link Scheme for the past three years, I have seen how the service underpins the support network of the older members of our communities. There is a very active body of volunteers supporting these less visible members of our villages every day, week in, week out. DVLS is a Community Interest Company and depends on the generosity of the volunteers with their time and availability to be able to offer this wonderful service. Some volunteers offer one hour every fortnight, whilst other volunteers may be driving clients as many as 3 or 4 times a week. We all have varying demands on our time, but no amount of time is too little to be useful. Volunteers retain control of the hours they offer, and can say no to requests. It is a confidential service; volunteers are CRB checked and the service is funded by donations and grants from Community First and our Parish Councils. To find out more about the services available or to become a volunteer contact the DVLS Scheme co-ordinator, Steve, on 01249 891746.
The Good Neighbour Scheme runs across Wiltshire. This Scheme seeks to build a bridge between older more vulnerable members of our communities and the services that can improve the quality of life they have. This can make life easier and enable individuals to stay in their own homes with a greater sense of wellbeing. The Good Neighbour Scheme is a signposting service managed by Community First, a registered charity who seek to strengthen our rural communities, and the Scheme is funded by Wiltshire Council. The Good Neighbour Co-ordinator is available to visit older members of the community and assist in accessing services to support independence and improve wellbeing. This is neither an advice role, nor one providing the actual service requested, but helps in accessing the right information and the correct service for the individual.
As Good Neighbour Co-ordinator for this area, I refer clients to the DVLS Scheme regularly. I am very aware of the increased demand this means for them in providing volunteers. I am also increasingly aware of the hidden needs among older members of our communities for this incredible support network that is available to them – both in terms of the DVLS services and the Good Neighbour Scheme. We all have contact with older members of our villages so please bear us in mind and let them know about the services we can offer and encourage them to use what is on offer. If you have concerns about managing at home and would like help in finding out about what is available in this area, ring Ellen on 07543 730796.
If you are unsure about quite which service you need, Steve and I will direct you to the right place, so feel free to ring either of us!